Marketers often talk about a “marketing mix”, which generally means a combination of traditional and digital marketing activities. Some are more measurable, such as clicks from a landing page, while others are more nebulous, like print ads which intend to promote general market awareness. The two should be designed to work together, so that awareness highlights a link on a SERP. However, this buddy-system can still make calculating the ROI of any individual initiative tricky. We know when a unique visit to our website comes to us from a landing page because we can follow the trail back to the original click. But even though print ads are still used by 50% of industrial marketers, most only include simple homepage URLs. A visitor can arrive at your homepage from many different directions, making it hard to know exactly how to reach them again.
Does it matter? As stated, a marketing mix is kind of like an improvised cocktail: as long as we’re getting decent results, can’t we just trust the process? Well, when you’re looking to apportion larger chunks of one’s marketing budget into those activities with the best conversion rates, it helps to have statistics to back up the best choice. We can go by feel, but that usually means trial and error, informed by experience, with a dash of our best “guestimation” – which can work, but we’re not getting the most from our tools and we’re certainly not going to be very aggressive. Slow growth can be stable, but it can also lead to a loss of faith in the power of marketing in general. Unrealized marketing potential affects a company’s ability to compete, particularly during moments when one’s industry is stagnating and the opportunity to grab market share is at its apex.
So, if print ads represent 50% of industrial content marketing activity but their efficacy is also difficult to measure, what’s the better way? If you read the title of this post, you already know: email marketing. The statistics are staggering. According to several 2016 Industrial Marketing Reports:
• 97% of engineers will consider an email in their inbox
• 92% of industrial marketers use email to distribute content
• 80% of marketers agree that email is core to their business
• 79% of marketers say email generates ROI, a 48 percent year-over-year increase
• 64% have integrated email marketing activity with their overall marketing strategy
Those are pretty informing numbers, but it’s very important to know that 83% of engineers use a spam filter and of those emails that make it through only 40% are scanned for interest. Still good, but it does mean that email campaigns need to be carefully and thoughtfully designed in order to break through and deliver a traceable link. “Batch and blast” campaigns can get your company blacklisted, as can teasing subjects that attempt to “fool” recipients. In order to build trust you have to make your subject lines compelling wth compelling content to match. The relative low cost of email campaigns is often abused by marketers who simply cast as wide a net as possible. Instead, use the low cost to justify spending more time and resources on the content itself and engage a carefully vetted prospect list. Once that trust is built, you’ll have a direct line to them and one that can be easily measured.
– S. Norton
For more info on how you can affordably create effective email campaigns for your company through our experienced SMS staff, send an email to [email protected] and/or reply in the comments below.